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Nu Nah-Hup: Sacajawea’s Story

May 13, 2023 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Event Series Event Series (See All)

A new opera that reimagines the story of Sacajawea, the extraordinary Agai-Dika/Lemhi-Shoshone woman who was a crucial member of the historic 1804-1806 Lewis and Clark Expedition, from her Agai-Dika, Indigenous perspective and oral history and language of her familial descendants.

Libretto by Rose Ann Abrahamson

Music by Justin Ralls and Hovia Edwards

Saturday, May 13 | 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 14 | 2 p.m.

Hinckley Studio Theatre
Hampton Opera Center

Sung in Aqai-Dika/Lemhi-Shoshone, Québécois French, English, and also including Native American Sign Language (with English supertitles).

Tickets available now for May 13-14; call Portland Opera Box Office at 503-241-1802 or online at this link: https://secure.portlandopera.org/operatheateroregon

On May 13-14, 2023 OTO will premiere a 35-minute scene of Nu Nah-Hup: Sacajawea’s Story. This new work in development reimagines the story of Sacajawea, the extraordinary Agai-Dika/Lemhi-Shoshone woman who was a crucial member of the historic 1804-1806 Lewis and Clark Expedition, from her Aqai-Dika, Indigenous perspective.

The scene will be presented alongside excerpts of music, soundscapes, and presentations of traditional Agai-Dika/Lemhi-Shoshone music, language, and culture by Rose Ann Abrahamson and also features Native American Flutist and composer Hovia Edwards with chamber orchestra. Our presented scene is based on an incident of domestic violence recorded in the original expedition journals on August 14, 1805.*

We are thrilled to announce an internationally renowned cast to realize this work including Kwagiulth and Stó:lō First Nations mezzo-soprano, Marion Newman premiering the role of Sacajawea. Joining her are baritones, Richard Zeller, who will portray Toussaint Charbonneau, and Dan Gibbs as Captain William Clark.

We are honored our production will feature originally commissioned traditional deer dress, leggings, moccasins and traditional Agai-Dika cradleboard crafted by Rose Ann Abrahamson and her sister, Rozina George as well as a reproduction of Sacajawea’s historic blue bead belt, crafted by Leela Abrahamson, Rose Ann’s daughter. Rose Ann’s daughter, Dustina Abrahamson, will also design traditional hair and makeup for Marion Newman’s portrayal of their ancestor, Sacajawea.

We are incredibly fortunate to be collaborating and guided by Rose Ann Abrahamson, great-great-grandniece of Sacajawea, through Chief Cameahwait (brother of Sacajawea), and great-great granddaughter of Chief Tendoy (son of Chief Cameahwait). Rose Ann is an educator, storyteller, culture bearer, historian, and respected tribal stateswoman of the Aqai-Dika (“Salmon Eaters”) Lemhi-Shoshone Nation and an enrolled member of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribe, located in Fort Hall, Idaho. We are also thrilled to collaborate with Shoshone-Bannock composer, singer, and flutist Hovia Edwards.

Complimentary tickets are available for self-identifying Native individuals. Request your ticket by calling the box office.

Please also call Portland Opera’s box office at 503.241.1802 for $15 student tickets and Arts for All tickets (subject to availability).


May 13, 2023
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Event Categories:


Opera Theater Oregon
Portland Opera


Hampton Opera Center Hinckley Studio Theatre
211 SE Caruthers Street
Portland, OR 97202 United States
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